Toward the study of astrochemical reaction dynamics with ion imaging techniques

Cunshun Huang, Wen Li, Myung Hwa Kim, Arthur G. Suits

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review


We present new results for some astrochemically relevant reaction processes obtained using reflectron velocity map ion imaging and Megapixel ion imaging techniques developed in our laboratory recently. Using reflectron multimass velocity map ion imaging, we studied the vibrationally mediated photodissociation dynamics in the ethylene cation. We simultaneously record spatially resolved images of parent C2H4+ ions as well as photofragment C2H3+ and C 2H2+ ions originating in dissociation from the vibronic excitations in two distinct bands, 7f402 and 8f000, at roughly the same total energy. The experimental results are discussed in terms of the possible influence of the torsional excitation on competition between direct dissociation, isomerization, and radiationless transitions through conical intersections among the numerous electronic states that participate in the dissociation. In conjunction with dc slice imaging, the Megapixel ion imaging technique can improve the resolution up to ten times higher than standard video camera resolution and at very low cost. We obtained VUV nonresonant ionization and resonance enhanced multiphoton ionization (REMPI) results for the reactions of Cl with alkanes with this technique. Using REMPI detection, the product HCl (v=0, J=2) image of state-resolved crossed beam scattering results for Cl + C2H 6 was acquired at a collision energy of 6.7 ± 0.6 kcal/mol. The experimental results show strongly coupled angular and translational energy distributions revealing features of the reaction not seen in previous studies. These observations provide new insight into the dynamics of the reaction.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationASTROCHEMISTRY
Subtitle of host publicationFrom Laboratory Studies to Astronomical Observations
Number of pages11
StatePublished - 2006
EventASTROCHEMISTRY: From Laboratory Studies to Astronomical Observations - Honolulu, HI, United States
Duration: 18 Dec 200520 Dec 2005

Publication series

NameAIP Conference Proceedings
ISSN (Print)0094-243X
ISSN (Electronic)1551-7616


ConferenceASTROCHEMISTRY: From Laboratory Studies to Astronomical Observations
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityHonolulu, HI


  • Crossed beam
  • Dynamics
  • Megapixel ion imaging
  • Reflectron mutimass velocity map ion imaging


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